Friday, July 13, 2012

For Thai recipes using fish sauce: Tiparos!

There are many Thai recipes using fish sauce as an ingredient, but which brand is the best? That depends on personal taste. There are lots of fish sauce brands selling in the market. Some were made from Thailand, some from Vietnam. In general, fish sauces from Thailand tend to be a bit pungent in taste and aroma than those of Vietnam. If you ask which brand I prefer most to add in recipes using fish sauce, I would say Tiparos.

You may ask if one can use Vietnamese fish sauce instead of Thai’s. I would say they can be substituted but since most of Vietnamese fish sauce are milder and sweeter, better use Thai fish sauce for Thai dishes and Vietnamese sauce for Vietnamese cooking for the best result.
Tiparos for recipes using fish sauce
Good fish sauce should be clear brown with no dregs

I always have two different brands of fish sauce. One would be a “light” to use for any curry soups, steaming or some dipping with lime juice as an ingredient. Another would be a “full body” or “all purpose” to use for frying or general dipping. For the first I use Tiparos. The taste is salty (of cause!) but not too much, with umami. When I add some of this sauce in any recipes using fish sauce especially Thai curry, the mild smoky aroma would not spoil the scents of herbs. Also it can be use for dipping sauce that has lime juice as an ingredient due to the fact that the mild scent would not mess up the fragrance of lime juice. I love Tiparos with Thai paprika, lime juice, and Thai omelet. Really yummy!

The difference in taste and aroma of fish sauces depends mainly on fermentation and aging processes. For all Thai fish sauce, this brand’s taste is light. The ingredients in fish sauce are small fish (Indian anchovy) 76%, salt 23%, and sugar 1%. You can easily see that Tiparos has the highest proportion of fish but, surprisingly, the aroma is low in fishy but smoky instead. The taste is salty with a bit of sweet make it the most proper choice to add in any Thai curry soup as I post earlier. The price is not so expensive. Tiparos also low in sodium and all natural. Good for your health!

Not just me that rate this brand as the finest. A poll from a famous cooking webboard of Thailand showed this brand as the best for any recipes using fish sauce. Unfortunately, it was written in Thai, but I can translate to you. The topic is asking which brand of fish sauce is the greatest in both taste and aroma. Out of 127 voters, 35 (27.56%) chose Tiparos (in Thai ทิพรส), followed by Squid brand (26 people, 20.47%) which is the sauce I use in frying.

Tiparos passes all the criteria for being one of the best for any recipes using fish sauce. It is clear brown liquid with no dregs even though you leave it for a long time. The brand also has protein of more than 20 percent, a good criterion for Thai Industrial Standards (TIS). The bottle is highly sealed. The only drawback of Tiparos is that its bottle is made from plastic for the convenience of transportation which may look shoddy for users, but it is a minor thing compares to all the pros.

If you are planning on cooking any Thai recipes with fish sauce, this is the sauce you should have. Trust me, you will use it a lot in Thai cooking! You can buy it either from any Asian store near your house or from (with further reviews from customers) via the links below which have all the size of Tiparos for you to choose the one that fits your need.

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